With an interest in 3D printing, I started out updating Sol Lewitt's instructions. I initially thought that this could be done by replacing Sol Lewitt's written/diagrammed instructions with digital instructions (CAD Model). While working on the project, I became not only interested in the creation of the instructions but also their distribution. This led me to think more about the possibilities of 3D printing as a medium for distribution. I decided that it would be interesting to update Claes Oldenburg's Store (1961) in which Oldenburg created a store to sell his work at mercantile prices. By creating a store like this, Oldenburg challenged the traditional method (gallery) of art distribution/pricing. I decided to do something similar. Instead of just presenting CAD models on my computer, I am presenting a web page (an online store) with images of CAD models that link to grabCAD (a site used to share CAD files) where anyone would be able to download the CAD files/view them in 3D. Because there is no physical material involved in the production of the models, I would not ask anyone to pay to use any of the models. It would be up to the user to decide wether or not they would want to actually print the CAD file. A viewer/collector would not need to own a physical copy of the work because they have the instructions needed to print the piece. I feel as if the digital CAD model is just as good a representation of the piece as the printed physical object. SHOP can be accessed by going to this link http://lookatmeim3d.tumblr.com/
JUST A LITTLE NOTE FROM grabCAD
“The idea becomes a machine that makes the art.”
Sol Lewitt felt that, the artist was responsible for coming up with ideas and not necessarily responsible for the physical creation of works of art. He would hire people to construct his artwork from written instructions and diagrams. Sol Lewitt felt that by eliminating the artists role in the construction of art objects he could focus more on the creation of the idea. Because he entrusted the creation of his pieces to others, he would naturally expect some variation within each constructed work because the instructions could be interpreted in different ways.
I would like to update Sol Lewitt's work/method of distribution by creating a digital instruction (a CAD model) for a work of art and distribute it to people electronically who would in turn be able to print the 3D CAD model. By doing this, I would be in control of the idea content but not at all involved with the actual production of the art object. The production of the object would likely be entrusted to a rapid prototyping machine or some other machine capable of creating the 3D object from scratch. This would also eliminate any variation with in the pieces. This would then create a direct link between idea and final piece.
Some quick info on 3D printing:
3D printing has advanced tremendously in the past couple of years. We have gone from using rapid prototyping technologies to create crude models to creating real working parts. 3D printing has also become very inexpensive. With companies like Maker Bot it has also become possible to own personal 3D printers. With the help of online communities people have been able to print/share/design/improve upon existing ideas and designs.
Within the art world several groups of people have tried to use 3D printing as a medium.
3D printing also has some slightly scary implications. Most recently, someone was able to print a working gun.